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Standout performers from Kentucky football’s Sunday Showcase

After seeing so much upper-tier talent pour into Kroger Field on Friday and Saturday evening for to kick off Kentucky football’s long weekend of high school camps, I have to admit I was a bit worried about a potential dropoff in big-name prospects on day three.

It took all of ten minutes for my worries to be thrown out the door.

On Saturday, the two big names in attendance as non-participants were 2020 four-star linebacker Quandarrius Robinson, 247Sports’ No. 41 player in the class, and 2020 four-star defensive end and Miami commit Samuel Anaele, another consensus top-250 prospect. They both looked like they could step on the field this fall and start right away.

On Sunday, the Kentucky coaching staff followed it up with a visit from 247Sports’ No. 7 prospect in the class of 2021, future five-star cornerback GaQuincy McKinstry, who already holds offers from Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Georgia, and LSU, among others. Outside of McKinstry, 2020 four-star DT target Octavious Oxendine was the other big prospect the Kentucky coaching staff spent a lot of time with.

In terms of on-field talent, there was plenty to go around, as well.

2021 offensive tackle William Griffin was easily the most impressive players at camp on Sunday, if not the entire weekend. I was standing with Justin Rowland of watching the quarterbacks in action (I’ll touch on them, as well) when he received a call from Jeff Drummond telling us to stop what we were doing and get over to watch him compete. And even with fairly high expectations, he somehow managed to top all of them.

At 6-foot-5, 310 pounds, the Nashville, TN native tossed medicine balls aside like they were ping pong balls and threw pad-boys back five feet during warmups alone. And then when the one-on-ones got started, Griffin continued to dominate everyone in sight, showing off a strong, wide base, strong punch, and impressive bend for a player so young. After just a few reps, the offensive tackle prospect had Mark Stoops, Vince Marrow, John Schlarman, Derrick LeBlanc, and Brad White all huddled around watching him take care of business.

He already holds offers from LSU, Auburn, and Ohio State, among others, and you better believe schools like Alabama, Clemson, and Georgia will be joining in on the action sooner rather than later. If Griffin isn’t a five-star, then I don’t know who is.

2020 three-star DE Reginald Perry was also competing, and from a physical standpoint, he certainly looked the part of an SEC defensive lineman.

Standing 6-foot-7, 290 pounds, Perry already holds offers from Ole Miss, Mississippi State, and South Carolina, among others. During one-on-one drills, Perry proved to be a legitimate talent as a cross-body rusher, but wasn’t the best at getting upfield going through elite offensive linemen. While he has the body of a defensive end, he might project better as a defensive tackle at the college ranks.

During his time matched up against Griffin, Perry held his own, even winning a few reps against the (likely) future five-star.

Here was one of the matchups between the duo:

Overall, Perry looked like a legitimate target for Kentucky on the defensive line, and he certainly has the body for the UK coaching staff to mold if he eventually decides to end up in Lexington.

2021 three-star linebacker Tristan Cox, a Pulaski County native, had a strong showing in individual drills. He plays on both sides of the football in high school, and he certainly showed that with pretty solid versatility and athleticism in front of the Kentucky coaching staff. Cox already holds offers from Kentucky, Louisville, Purdue, Cincinnati, and West Virginia, among others.

Javae Gilmore, brother of Kentucky quarterback signee Amani Gilmore, impressed as both an outside linebacker and as a tight end on Sunday.  He tweeted afterward that he earned a scholarship after camp, and I’m told that it will be as a tight end in the class of 2022. At 6-foot-2, 190 pounds, he already has solid size, and he’ll only continue to grow over the next few years. I believe he’ll end up as a high three-star and possibly even four-star in the coming years.

Clayton Thomas, a 2020 defensive end/outside linebacker prospect out of Florida, caught the attention of the Kentucky coaching staff, as well. Listed at 6-foot-2, 230 pounds, Thomas has solid strength and athleticism, definitely holding his own in most of the drills. He has already visited Georgia Tech this summer, and he is planning on visiting at least a few more schools in the coming weeks.

As I wrote in a post earlier in the day, the quarterback group on Sunday was definitely impressive, definitely the best of the weekend from top to bottom. In terms of specific targets that stood out, Christian Veilleux (2021), Jakob Foss (2021), DC Tabscott (2021), Will Crowder (2021), and Kaiya Sheron (2021) definitely separated themselves as the top-five pass-throwers in attendance.  Judah Holtzclaw, brother of former Kentucky tight end Dakota Holtzclaw, also had a solid camp.

If you missed that post earlier, you can check it out below:

Five quarterbacks steal the show at Kentucky football’s Sunday Showcase


Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR